Chikankata UPND member of parliament Chrispin Mwiinga has accused the government of making profit out of its people by re-selling the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) maize at K111 per 50 kilogram bag.

And Mwiinga has advised parliamentarians to team up and sensitise their communities to migrate to drought resistant crops.

In an interview, Mwiinga said it did not make sense for government to sell maize at K111 when they bought it from farmers at K65.

“Unfortunately also, there is maize in Mazabuka’s Kaleya there where government has stored the maize which they bought from farmers. That is the same maize we sold to government at K65 but now they are selling the same maize…at K111. It does not make sense,” Mwiinga said.

He said the PF government was not supposed to be a profit making institution to its people.

“If they bought the maize at K65, why should they sell it at K111? They were supposed to sell the maize at the same K65 which they bought it at,” Mwiinga said.

And Mwiinga said the drought situation in Chikankata is real, further stressing the need for government to supply relief food.

“All we need to do is to team up and educate our people so that they may divert from maize to planting something else that is resistant to this drought. We need actually to sensitize our people so that we can divert from crops that need a lot of rain and do crops that are resistant to drought,” he said.

“I have always told my people that we must remain calm and steadfast. We are doing everything possible. We are pleading to government on their behalf that government actually hears our cry. So our appeal really to government is that if they can release the relief food for the people. This is the time that we really need each other and I really want to thank our people in the community for their calmness and my prayer is that all things equal, government should be able to release the much needed relief food that we are in dire need of.”

He further bemoaned the severe drought in his constituency saying that people in the area were dying of hunger.

“The disaster is real. I am just coming from my constituency. I went round the whole constituency yesterday, the disaster is real. People are actually dying of hunger out there. They don’t have food. There is nowhere to run to. The little crops that they had planted have actually dried up. So there is literally no food. We are hoping the government can come to the aid of our people so that at least they can even have just one little meal in a day,” Mwiinga said.

He said government had not rendered any help to alleviate poverty in Chikankata District but that the appeal for relief food had already been submitted.

“At the moment, there hasn’t been anything (relief food), we have done the needful. Actually, I have visited the DMMU office. We have been told the procedure that we should put it in writing, which we have done. And as I am speaking now, the DC, who is also the chairman for DMMU in the district, has already submitted whatever documents that we were asked to submit,” said Mwiinga.